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9 Best Things to Do in Laos To Have a Memorable Vacation

TeamAckoFeb 21, 2024

Are you planning to visit Laos for a memorable vacation? If yes, then you must be interested to know how you can spend your vacation and have a crazy experience. There are several things to do in Laos, starting from walking around That Luang Stupa to visiting the Plains of Jars. You can even hike Mount Phousi, taste the mouth-watering Laotian cuisine and participate in adventure sports. 

Here we have brought you 9 absolutely exciting things to do in Laos to make your trip successful and memorable.

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9 Best Things to Do in Laos

Known as the ‘land of million elephants’, Laos is one of the exotic tourist destinations due to its architectural wonders. From visiting the valuable ancient relics to witnessing the captivating tourist destinations, there are several things you can do in Laos. 

Here, we have curated a list of the top 9 best things to do in Laos for a first-time traveller.

1. Stroll Around That Luang Stupa

Located in the capital city of Laos, Vientiane, the Great Stupa or That Luang, is the holiest monument and a must-visit for tourists. The statue is a symbol of Lao sovereignty and the Buddhist religion. It stands 140 feet above the ground and is painted gold. The statue was constructed around 1556 when the Lan Xang Kingdom made Vientiane its capital. 

In addition, for many Buddhists, Pha That Luang is a religious site, and they visit this place to offer prayers and seek blessings. They believe the stupa contains Buddha’s breastbone. Nevertheless, you will find different temples around the stupa where you can relax and get mesmerised by the beautiful gold facades and red roofs.

  • Location: Pha That Luang Vientiane, That Luang, Xaysettha 10009, Laos.

  • Timings: The place remains open from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. from Tuesday to Sunday.

  • Best Time to Visit: In November, you can join the Pha That Luang festival.

  • Price Per Person: Rs. 400 entry fee per person 

  • Major Attractions: Wat That Luang Tai and Wat That Luang Neua are the two major temples inside the complex. 

  • Tip: Visit early morning or late afternoon, as the weather is pleasant during these times. 

2. Explore the Wat Pho Temple, a UNESCO World Heritage Site

The Wat Pho Temple is a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Champassak. It is a popular Laos tourist spot, and people from all over the world visit it. When you visit this place, you will witness the Mekong River’s spectacular views and be mesmerised by the adjoining areas. The place portrays excellent craftsmanship, as you can discover the art and history in the pillars, sanctuary and shrine. 

Though the structures are starting to fall, you can still witness the remains of the grand architecture. Inside the premises, you can see several images of Buddha, a library room and stone carvings. 

  • Location: RRXG+5X3, Muang Champassak, Laos.

  • Timings: The place remains open every day from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.

  • Best Time to Visit: You must visit the place between November and March as it is a dry season.

  • Price Per Person: Rs. 200 per person

  • Major Attractions: You can see many carvings inside the premises, including two apsaras and two guardians. 

  • Tip: You must visit this place early in the morning or late afternoon.

3. Explore the Limestones of Kong Lor Cave

Kong Lor Cave, or Tham Kong Lo, is one of the popular tourist places in Laos. The Kong Lor Cave is 7 kilometres long where you can see karst limestone and magnificent rock formations. To visit this mysterious place, you must take a boat ride, which will add up to the excitement of the overall journey. 

You will be mesmerised by the cave’s interior, as it is a dark chamber and is filled with stalagmites. Furthermore, while exiting the cave, you can even stroll and explore the Ban Pom Ngam village nearby. 

  • Location: Phu Hin Bun National Park, in Khammouane Province, Laos.

  • Timings: NA

  • Best Time to Visit: Visit the cave in the dry season, starting in November and ending in March.

  • Price Per Person: Rs. 450 per person (inclusive of boat ride, entry fee to the park, and cave)

  • Major Attractions: During your tour of the Kong Lor Cave, you can see the spectacular stalagmites and stalactites. You can also swim in the Nam Hinboun River to relax and cool down during the midday heat. 

  • Tip: Start your trip early in the morning to witness mesmerising views of the area.

4. Relish Yourself in the Laotian Cuisine

The small, landlocked country has much to offer culturally, especially its cuisine. Laotian cuisine is rich in fresh ingredients, herbs and flavours and has a unique cooking tradition. The sticky rice is the staple food of Laos, and it connects Laos communities to their culture. Furthermore, Laotian cuisine is becoming famous worldwide as many Lao restaurants are opening in Europe, Australia, Asia and the United States of America.

There are several regional variations of Lao cuisine, but the Vientiane variation is more sophisticated. Although the Laotian cuisine may be similar to Vietnam or Thailand in terms of herbs, flavours and spices, the Lao dishes are unique, and travellers love this cuisine during their visit to this country. 

  • Location: NA

  • Timings: NA

  • Best Time to Visit: NA

  • Price Per Person: Rs. 800 to Rs. 1200. However, it depends on the food items you are having.

  • Must Try Dishes: Try Ping Gai, a Laotian grilled chicken that represents the different flavours of Lao. You can also taste Or Lam, a traditional stew from Luang Prabang. In addition, if you want to try these dishes, you must visit Lao Kitchen and Manda de Laos.

  • Tip: You can try the street foods of Laos, as they are appetising and mouth-watering.

5. Go on a Shopping Spree at the Night Market of Luang Prabang

Visiting the incredible Luang Prabang Night Market is one of the famous Laos things to do during your trip. You can spend a wonderful evening in this place and shop your heart out. In this market, the travellers socialise with the local vendors to buy handicrafts and get accustomed to the Laotian culture. 

In addition, you can find everything that you want to buy from Laos as a souvenir. The night market draws the attention of the crowds every evening, and you can try delicious Laotian cuisine in this place. It has a relaxed vibe as the vendors welcome you with big smiles. 

  • Location: Sisavangvong Road, Luang Prabang, Laos.

  • Timings: Open every day from 5 p.m. to 11 p.m.

  • Best Time to Visit: NA

  • Price per Person: You can buy items at affordable prices. It depends on the things you want to buy.

  • Major Attractions: You can buy souvenirs, apparel, jewellery and art in the Luang Prabang Night Market.

  • Tip: When visiting the Luang Prabang Night Market, try the delicious street food from the local vendors. 

6. Wake up Early to Witness the Alms Giving Ceremony

If you are in Luang Prabang, you must attend the Alms Giving Ceremony. It is an event where hundreds of monks stroll through the streets and take food offerings from locals and tourists. The Alms given to monks have been in practice for centuries and is a sacred ritual of Buddhism. Every morning, hundreds of monks practise this ritual by wearing brightly coloured robes.  

Witnessing this event in Laos is an authentic experience and will attract your attention. You can give the monks rice, biscuits, fresh fruits, and traditional sweets or just witness the event. Furthermore, it is one of the special things to do in Laos that you must do regardless of your religion.

  • Location: V4VQ+FVJ, Sakkaline Rd, Luang Prabang, Laos.

  • Timings: Take place at dawn. Around 5.30 a.m. in summer and 6.30 a.m. in winter.

  • Best Time to Visit: Throughout the year

  • Price Per Person: NA

  • Major Attractions: The Alms Giving Ceremony has a corresponding relationship between the receivers and givers of Alms.  

  • Tip: You must sit quietly during the event and prepare your offerings in advance.

7. Explore the Capital City of Laos, Vientiane

The largest and capital city of Laos, Vientiane, is one of the top attractions in Laos. It is known for its rich history and is Laos’ political, cultural and economic centre. You can enjoy a serene and relaxed vibe in this city and participate in several activities. 

Lying along the Mekong River, you can walk along the riverfront to enjoy the atmosphere and relax in the nearby cafes and restaurants. In addition, you can visit various monuments and temples in this city, such as Wat Si Saket Temple and Pha That Luang Monument. Apart from these, you can witness many French influences in this city, as it is a part of a former French colony. 

  • Location: Vientiane, Laos

  • Timings: NA

  • Best Time to Visit: November to February, as you can experience a comfortable climate.

  • Price Per Person: NA

  • Major Attractions: You can visit the Patuxai Victory Gate, Buddha Park, COPE Visitor Center and Wat Si Muang.

  • Tip: One of the best ways to explore the city is to rent a two-wheeler and tour the undiscovered parts of Vientiane. 

8. Engage in the Bokeo Gibbon Experience

Are you an adventure lover? If yes, you must participate in the Bokeo Gibbon Experience in Laos. It is one of the best things to do in Laos for adventure junkies. In this activity, you can get up close with wild animals and stay in one of the world’s highest treehouses. It is initiated to conserve Nam Kan National Park’s beauty and protect the wildlife. 

The Gibbon Experience is also a thrilling and one-of-a-kind way for visitors to hike and zipline. It enables the tourists to go on a multi-day trek through the dense forest and reside in treehouses high above the forest floor. 

  • Location: Main Street, Huay Xai 05000, Laos.

  • Timings: Monday to Sunday, 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. However, on Saturday and Sunday, it closes at 4 p.m.

  • Best Time to Visit: Between November and May, you can spot gibbons and hear their songs.

  • Price Per Person: Each trek costs around Rs. 8,300 per person.

  • Major Attractions: You can use the zipline to go from one to another seamlessly and trek the area. In addition, you can stay in the treehouses for a night. 

  • Tip: When going for this experience, make sure to wear comfortable shoes and carry a small backpack with medicines and water.

9. Visit the Mysterious Plain of Jars

One of the mysterious prehistoric places in Laos is the Plain of Jars. There are 120 jar sites where you can witness stone jars made of granite, sandstone, limestone conglomerate or breccia at nearby quarries. These sites offer a picturesque view of the villages and farmlands to the tourists visiting here. The origin of the Plain of Jars is still a mystery, as the archaeologists cannot find the reason. 

However, the locals believe that King Cheung, after winning a furious battle, created these jars to brew lao lao rice wine to celebrate. The Plain of Jars is one of the famous Laos tourist attractions, as people from different regions of the world visit this place during their trip to the country. In addition, there are three most popular jar sites where you can find the largest jar, Site 1, Site 2 and Site 3.

  • Location: 75V2+653, Xiang Di, Laos.

  • Timings: You can visit this place any day between 8.30 a.m. and 5 p.m.

  • Best Time to Visit: You can visit this place any time of the year, but November is recommended as the weather is dry and comfortably warm. 

  • Price Per Person: Rs. 40 per site.

  • Major Attractions: The mysterious 3-metre-high jars are the major attractions of the place. 

  • Tip: As fewer options for food and water are available, you must carry your own. Furthermore, stay in the marked trails to avoid any issues as this place still has undiffused bombs from the Vietnam War.  

Henceforth, Laos is a perfect destination for a memorable vacation in a Southeast Asian country. There are several things to do in Laos with your family, friends or partner that will complement your trip. You can also explore many undiscovered areas of this landlocked area and witness nature up close. Hope you find this article helpful and get a road map of things you can do in Laos.

Nevertheless, we recommend you buy travel insurance when travelling to Laos for a vacation. It will assist you in emergencies and cover the losses during your Laos trip. 

So, pack your bags and have a wonderful and pleasant trip to Laos!

Frequently Asked Questions

The following are some questions people generally ask about things to do in Laos.


Which are the most famous places to visit in Laos?

You can visit the following places during your trip to Laos:

  • Si Phan Don, Champassak
  • Buddha Park, Vientiane
  • Wat Xieng Thong, Luang Prabang
  • Mekong Riverside Park, Vientiane
  • The Plain of Jars, Xiangkhoang Plateau
  • That Luang, Vientiane

What are the famous things to see in Laos?

The following are some of the famous things to see in Laos:

  • Kuang Si Waterfall
  • Patuxay - Victory Monument Laos
  • Vang Vieng
  • Thakhek
  • Si Phan Don

How much do I need to explore Laos?

5 to 7 days are enough to roam and tour the whole of Laos. However, you can extend your stay and explore some new places in this country.

When is the best time to tour Laos?

The best time to tour Laos is between November and March, as the weather is dry and comfortably warm, which makes it easier to roam the whole country. 

Do I need to buy travel insurance when travelling to Laos?

It is not mandatory to buy travel insurance when travelling to Laos. However, you must buy travel insurance to protect yourself in case of any mishaps, like loss of passport, checked-in baggage, etc.

What are five fun things to do in Laos?

Here are some fun things you can do on your trip to Laos:

  • Rent an e-bike and travel to Luang Prabang.
  • Weave fabrics at Ock Pop Top.
  • Kayak at the Mekong River.
  • Meet elephants at the Sayaboury Elephant Sanctuary.
  • Soak yourself at Kuang Si Falls.

What are some travel tips for Laos?

Here are some of the travel advice for Laos:

  • Laos is one of the most inexpensive nations to tour in the Southeast Asian region, so plan your finances accordingly. 
  • Place winter clothes if you are planning to visit the northern region of Laos, as it can be chilly.
  • Ensure to carry emergency medicines on your Laos trip.
  • Avoid drinking tap water, as it is unsafe.
  • Carry sunscreen, as the climate can be warm during the daytime.

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